Milwaukee is off to an MLB-worst 2-13 start after collapsing in the second half last season, but Brewers owner Mark Attanasio insists manager Ron Roenicke’s job is safe.
Right now, my examinations are focused on how to improve our performance on the field. Relative to me, I’m not looking at the manager or the general manager right now.
I know how bad we’ve played. But we’re 14 games into the season, and Ron didn’t give up two grand slams [Tuesday]. I think we have to kind of parse through it. Everybody needs to be accountable, but we have to look at what people are responsible for, and then hold them accountable for what they’re responsible for.
Injuries have hit the Brewers very had, especially with catcher Jonathan Lucroy and center fielder Carlos Gomez, but they’re now 13-38 in their last 51 games dating back to last season. That’s an amazing collapse considering they were 71-55 before all the losses started piling up.
It’s also worth noting that Attanasio exercised the 2016 option on Roenicke’s contract last month, removing the potential lame-duck status for a manager with a 337-326 (.508) record since taking over the job in 2011. Doug Melvin is one of the longest-tenured general managers in baseball, holding the job since 2003.
The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly and Zach Buchanan report that Diamondbacks starter Madison Bumgarner has been competing in rodeos under a fake name as recently as December. The fake name is Mason Saunders. Bumgarner explains that “Mason” is shortened from “Madison,” while “Saunders” is his wife’s maiden name.
Bumgarner — err, Saunders — and one of his rodeo partners, Jaxson Tucker, won $26,560 in a team-roping rodeo competition in December. The Rancho Rio Arena posted a picture of the pair on Facebook, highlighting that they roped four steers in 31.36 seconds.
As Baggarly and Buchanan point out, Bumgarner also pointed out in a rodeo competition last March, just a couple days before pitching in a Cactus League game versus the Athletics, back when he was still with the Giants.
Bumgarner suffered bruised ribs and a left shoulder AC sprain in 2017 when he got into a dirt bike accident. Given that, Bumgarner’s latest extracurricular activity does raise a concern for the Diamondbacks, who inked him to a five-year, $85 million contract two months ago. Baggarly and Buchanan asked Bumgarner about such a concern. Bumgarner referred them to the club’s managing partner Ken Kendrick. Kendrick directed them to GM Mike Hazen. Hazen declined speaking about “specific contract language.” For what it’s worth, Bumgarner says he primarily uses his right hand to rope.
The jig is up on Bumgarner’s hobby. He jokingly said to The Athletic’s pair, “I’m nervous about this interview right now.” He added, “I’m upset with both you two.”